Karzai Aide: Britain Brought Taliban Impostor to Peace Talks

Fake Mullah Mansour Actually a 'Shopkeeper From Quetta'

It was only two days ago that President Hamid Karzai claimed the entire Mansour Affair, in which his government bribed and negotiated with what their believed with top Taliban leader Mullah Mansour only to discover he was an impostor, was completely made up by the media to discredit him. His office never backed off those claims but is now openly talking about what happened as a matter of fact. And a matter of blame.

According to Karzai’s chief of staff Mohammad Umer Daudzai, the man who would be Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour was brought to them by the British government over the summer. British outlets are detailing how Britain’s MI6 came to believe this was really the Mansour in question, and how they flew him from Quetta to Kabul and back on transport aircraft on a number of occasions.

Yet Afghanistan’s own intelligence sources, according to Daudzai, figured out pretty quickly that the Mullah Mansour in question wasn’t the real thing, and it turns out that he was a shopkeeper from Quetta, though officials did speculate that the Pakistani government may have been in some way responsible for his infiltration.

The exact details of the meetings are unclear but the fake Mansour was said to have been the chief negotiator on the Taliban side of the putative “peace talks” the Afghan government had been so loudly touting, and some officials say he made off with a large amount of money from coalition sources.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.